Saturday, October 31, 2009

Tender mercies

So, these kinds of things don't happen to me very often. But this is a story I just have to share.

As you all know, I'm working on my application to go on a mission. My Bishop informed me that all of my financial debt must be taken care of before I can go on a mission. When he told me, I remembered my debt to the school. Because I've been going to college for four semesters without a break, I've taken to charging my textbooks to my student account. Let me tell you, those things add up FAST and HIGH. Slowly, but surely, I've been picking away at that debt. But slowly is the operative word here. Every time I get a check, I think "How much am I going to eat until the next paycheck?", trying to put as much towards my debt as possible.

I never stopped preparing for a mission, however. I just pushed forward, paid my tithing, and hoped that I would somehow make enough to pay it all by December-- yes December. You can't have debt to the school and receive your diploma.

The Financial Aide office has been emailing me for a week. I avoided the emails, certain the "meeting" they wanted to arrange would turn into some "pay your debts to the school!" Auschwitz experience. Finally, I realized I couldn't avoid it any longer. I set up an appointment with a Brother Deming, and prepared myself for the worst.

I showed up early, wanting to make a good impression. I was called into his office and we chatted for about fifteen minutes. The thought "just tell me to pay up so I can go home" ran through my head several times. After practically telling this man my whole life story, he gets to the point.

"I called you in here to tell you that you've been offered a scholarship," he told me.

It started with laughter of disbelief, a few questions of "really? really?" And then I cried. I sobbed. I just couldn't believe this!! I've never applied for a scholarship, and now I'm being OFFERED one? Brother Deming handed me a box of tissues and smiled at me, declaring "this must be a relief."

I said, "yes, because..." and started crying again. It was pretty comical I assume, but all I felt was an immense relief I'd never experienced before in my life.

Brother Deming explained that the scholarship was for half tuiton, which is $800. He asked if I'd already paid all my tuition. I said that no I hadn't, but I only had $500 left, so could I put the extra towards my debt to the bookstore. He said I could use it for whatever, but asked, "How much debt do you have to the school?" I told him the amount, and then the most amazing thing happened. "I'll adjust it so that it covers everything."

What???? Is he SERIOUS?

Apparently. Because now my financial aide statement tells me that I have a $1600 scholarship (which is more than Bro Deming had said) available as soon as I turn in my thank-you letter.

I cried some more and asked, "how? How did I get selected for this."

He smiled and explained that once the funds are in from donors, the school decides who the money goes to."It pretty much comes down to following the spirit." My crying started all over again. "Kacey, I guess this goes to show that the Lord is very aware of you. He knows you are trying to follow His plan and He's trying to help you out."

As soon as Bro Deming said that, I knew that's EXACTLY what this meant. Because NO ONE knows how badly I needed that money. I never told my bishop, and hardly let some roommates know. Tori was a bit aware, but even then I tried to keep it under wraps. No one knew but my parents and the Lord, and there's no way my parents did this. It must be Heavenly Father.

Because of this, I'll be able to go on a mission in January, graduate in December, and survive this semester. And there's no way for me to even begin to express my sincere gratitude and awe at this whole situation.

So there. My miracle.


Deidra Smith said...

Thanks for sharing. That is great!! I love how the school does their scholarship stuff. We were also helped by a scholarship. Although it helped us to avoid debt for Kade's schooling while we were working hard to pay off the debt from my schooling. Congrats!!

Karen said...

It's hard to imagine any other school that builds your testimony while you try to pay your debt. Are there any other finanacial aid workers that testify of Christ's love for you as they distribute funds? Not too many I would imagine. Sometimes I feel so grateful for the "education" you are getting there. That all you girls got there.

Tressie Farley said...

Wow! Such a nice feeling as I read this post. Thanks :)